Fuelling the force through food

This article has photo gallery Published on LSIS Jayson Tufrey (author and photographer)

Location(s): Darwin, Northern Territory

Topic(s): HMAS Stirling, HMAS Glenelg (P96)

Able Seaman Maritime Logistics - Chef Adam Grant with a cheese platter for 'arvos' on board HMAS Glenelg during Exercise Kakadu 2016. (photo: LSIS Jayson Tufrey)
Able Seaman Maritime Logistics - Chef Adam Grant with a cheese platter for 'arvos' on board HMAS Glenelg during Exercise Kakadu 2016.

For some Navy chefs, cooking is a trade, for others a passion, and for one small boat sailor, keeping morale high through providing great tasting food for his team is a daily delight.

Able Seaman Maritime Logistics - Chef Adam Grant comprises half the dynamic duo of HMAS Glenelg’s catering capability and has been posted to the Armidale class patrol boat for the last nine months.

He was fortunate enough to get a sea-ride on a patrol boat while posted to the main galley at Western Australian base, HMAS Stirling, and said he was hooked.

Able Seaman Grant said that experience was enough for him put his hand up for a posting to Darwin, where a number of Navy's patrol boats are based.

“I love being on small boats; of course they have their challenges, but it’s a great environment to be in,” he said.

The two chefs in Glenelg prepare three meals, morning and afternoon tea for up to 30 people every day, and not just the basics. 

He keeps the ship's company motivated through fashioning impressive spreads from the standard Navy menu.

Able Seaman Grant said even though major fleet units cater for many more people, he and Leading Seaman Maritime Logistics - Chef Ben Coulter have enough work to keep them very busy.

That's because not only do they man the galley, they exchange tongs for lines and are flexibly employed across the boat.

“On small boats, we all have multiple ancillary duties. I act as bow-man in the sea boats and have fender duties during berthing,” Able Seaman Grant said.

“I also share canteen manager duties. It’s a big task keeping the ship running and everyone fed and happy during a busy period like an exercise.”